As a follow up of my earlier post on exercise and depression this new study published in Archives of General Psychiatry found that cognitive therapy centered around mindfulness worked as well as the typical antidepressants. And we already know how good meditation is for our brains.
But it is a bit more complicated than that, because the people with depression in this study were already in the remitting stage after having taken antidepressants for their major depression then in the recovered state they either were given a placebo (instead of their antidepressant), continued with the antidepressants, or taken off their medication and receiving mindfulness based therapy/therapy and continuing to practice this therapy at home.
Participants in MBCT attended 8 weekly group sessions and practiced mindfulness as part of daily homework assignments. Clinical assessments were conducted at regular intervals, and over an 18 month period, relapse rates for patients in the MBCT (mindfulness-based cognitive therapy) group did not differ from patients receiving antidepressants (both in the 30% range), whereas patients receiving placebo relapsed at a significantly higher rate (70%).
Interesting study with even more interesting implications.